Keeping your skin looking radiant, healthy, and youthful is essential because healthy skin is one of the biggest indicators of a healthy body. We really must treat it with care. Treating it with skin-friendly products will leave you feeling great about your health choices, and this is why many people tend to switch to a natural and organic skincare routine.
The natural skincare industry is one of the fastest-growing markets in the beauty industry. There are a lot of reasons and benefits to using natural skincare instead of traditional products, which may contain harmful synthetic chemicals. But beauty and skincare is personal – and you would like to choose what is best for you. Get to know the truth about natural and organic skincare products so you can decide if it’s beneficial for you to make a switch.
What is Natural and Organic Skincare?
Natural skincare can mean a lot of things, but the “natural” label is not regulated across the industry. This means every company can use the word “natural” and choose what it means for them. There’s a whole lot of debate in the industry on what is considered natural and what’s not.
Some people use organic and natural interchangeably, but they are not the same. All organic products are natural, but not all natural products are organic.
The term “natural” generally means it is derived from natural sources such as plants, animals, minerals, and marine sources and has no added synthetic compounds.
Organic means all ingredients are grown without pesticides, bioengineered genes, or petroleum-based fertilizers. If the product has USDA Organic Seal, it means it is made of 95 percent or more organic ingredients. It means that the ingredients were farmed using organic farming methods that promote biodiversity and recycle sources. If a product is labeled “made with organic ingredients,” it just means it contains at least 70 percent organic ingredients.
Terms to Know
With no strict definitions, terms that natural skincare manufacturers use can be hard to decipher. If you’re shopping for makeup or skincare, you’re going to see terms like cruelty-free, chemical-free, eco-friendly, paraben-free, phthalate-free, and more.
Major brands are catching on to the fact that consumers want their skincare to be natural and organic, so many are slapping a “natural” or “organic” sticker or label, even when it’s not.
Here are some terms you must understand when it comes to natural and organic skincare products:
This term refers to sustainability and environmental impact. Products that are labeled “green” are usually produced to limit environmental impact and harvesting to support the environment rather than harming it. Some “green” brands source ingredients locally, use recycled packaging, and produce products using wind and solar energy.
This is an unregulated term that describes products that focus on being non-toxic.
Vegan doesn’t always mean natural. It just means that products are created without any animal by-products, like collagen, honey, beeswax, lanolin, squalene, carmine, gelatin, and more.
Cruelty-free products are manufactured or developed by methods that do not involve experimentation or testing on animals. Brands can claim these without being certified, and companies use the label to imply that they don’t play a role in testing the products on animals or harming them in any form. As opposed to a more specific label such as “not tested in animals,” “cruelty-free doesn’t make this claim.
This regulated label focuses on sourcing and ensuring that the ingredients are ethically sourced in terms of people, environment, and the planet.
Parabens are preservatives and are used to prevent bacteria and molds from proliferating in your products. According to FDA and EU regulations, parabens in their current form are considered safe to use since cosmetic products only use a small concentration of parabens in their formulas. Parabens are avoided by many because of research that shows it can act like the hormone estrogen in the body and disrupt the normal function of the hormone systems affecting reproductive system functions, reproductive development, and fertility. It was also found to interfere with hormone production.
Phthalates are synthetic chemicals used in household items, including personal care products like soap, shampoo, and fragrances. The amount included in personal care products is considered safe and does not pose a danger to health. But these chemicals are linked to endocrine disruption, developmental and reproductive toxicity, and even cancer. If you wish to avoid it, use products with phthalate-free labels.
Sulfates, like sodium lauryl sulfate, are basically soaps. These ingredients help ingredients like water and oils mix together, which is why it’s often found in shampoos and other bath products. If there is a sulfate-free label, it means it doesn’t contain soapy ingredients.
According to the EWG, companies use this term to suggest that the product is safe, but the use of the term is unregulated. It’s often a marketing claim, and it doesn’t guarantee safety. It’s always best to check the ingredients of a product to determine if it can be non-toxic.
Benefits of Natural and Organic Skincare Products
If you are considering switching to organic and natural skin care products, here are the reasons why it can be beneficial to you:
1. Healthier for the skin
Organic skincare is made with ingredients that can meet the same standards as organic food, containing no harsh chemicals, fertilizers, or pesticides. Many chemical ingredients used as cheap fillers may do more harm than good. If you choose organic skincare, the natural ingredients work in harmony with your body, allowing your skin to balance and mend itself.
While most of us look at health in terms of a balanced diet and regular exercise, the products we use on our bodies also matter since the skin is our largest organ. The average person uses about ten different beauty products in their skin every day – unknowingly exposing themselves to a wide range of unnecessary and potentially harmful chemicals.
The ingredients contained in a skincare product slowly sinks into the bloodstream, especially when used continually. It may have a direct effect on the body’s processes. Many conventional skin care products contain endocrine-disrupting chemicals that can wreak havoc on the immune, endocrine, and reproductive systems. The more products you use, the higher toxic concentrations can accumulate in your body in the long run.
If you use natural products, you can be sure that your skin absorbs safe compounds and beneficial nutrients without negative health effects.
2. Can reduce skin irritation
People with sensitive skin know how irritating some chemicals can be for the skin. Some products can leave the skin feeling dry, red, and sore. It’s easy to find natural alternatives that can be kinder to your skin and work effectively.
3. Packed with beneficial nutrients
Natural products are made with naturally occurring ingredients that are naturally packed with beneficial nutrients for the body. This is due to the fact that they contain compounds and vitamins, which help the body function at optimal levels.
4. Has stood the test of time
Before all these skin-enhancing ingredients were discovered, people are using natural ingredients. Many ingredients included in modern natural skincare products have been used for centuries and were developed from ancient remedies because they are known for their incredible skin benefits. Before the term “skincare” even existed, people are using jojoba oil, aloe, honey, milk, and all sorts of natural ingredients to soothe skin problems.
5. Smells better
When the ingredients are natural or organic, it’s naturally scented. To make sure of this, look for labels such as “natural fragrance” or “fragrance-free.” Natural products come with a mild fragrance that is not overpowering. When you get used to the fragrance and essential oils from the real plant, you will be able to notice the difference from an artificial fragrance, and you’ll never want to switch back.
6. Might clear up skin
Natural products do not always mean they won’t ever irritate your skin. Everyone’s tolerance for allergy-causing ingredients varies, for both natural and synthetic ingredients. You might break out using traditional makeup and skincare products, and switching to organic can clear up your skin. But sometimes, natural ingredients can also cause skin irritation. If you’re prone to breakouts, try new products one at a time so you can test your tolerance.
The processes associated with manufacturing synthetic skincare products puts a great deal of stress on the environment. When synthetic chemicals from a synthetic product seep into the ground, it can negatively affect the surrounding ecosystems.
8. Can help you save in the long run
Anyone who’s ever tried (or even just considered) to switch from drugstore skincare to natural and organic skincare might disagree that it’s better for your wallet. But even if they come at a more upscale price than drugstore brands, the quality of ingredients will make you use fewer products. While some chemical-based products are cheaper, you end up using a lot of them – putting layer after layer of product to make a complete skincare routine. But if you switch to organic, the natural ingredients improve your skin and simplify your routine, which means less money spent buying other products.
Are Natural and Organic Skincare Better for your Skin?
The idea of using natural skin care products seems like a good one, but changing your trusted moisturizer or toner isn’t as simple as switching from incandescent to LED lightbulbs. Going green or natural can be appealing, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that it can be highly effective. One must study the effects of, for instance, a blueberry on your skin. Natural products are great, but you also have to consider their effectiveness to make sense.
If you have real skin concerns, what you must look for is evidence-based medicine about their safety and efficacy. People always think that natural is the better choice, but it’s not always the case. Conversely, just because an ingredient is synthetic doesn’t make it problematic for the skin.
Also, natural ingredients can be inconsistent in makeup and skincare products, so it’s hard to measure potency and effectiveness. Other natural ingredients, such as essential oils, can irritate the skin.
Not everything natural is sensitive to the skin, and not all synthetic ingredients are harsh. In fact, many natural and organic ingredients used in skincare today can cause major skin sensitivities that can build up over time. Also, a natural ingredient’s medicinal and healthful benefits do not always translate to a better outcome when used topically.
Take a look at the good and bad natural skincare ingredients:
1. Good natural ingredients – These are the non-problematic natural ingredients that can benefit the skin.
- Amino acids
- Hyaluronic acid
- Green tea
- Aloe vera
- Shea butter
- Omega fatty acids
- Goji berry
- Cocoa butter
- Coconut oil
- Sunflower oil
- Olive oil
- Argan oil
- Safflower oil
- Jojoba oil
- Evening primrose oil
- Sesame oil
- Algae extracts
- Sea whip extract
2. Bad natural ingredients – These may have health benefits for the body, but they can cause skin aggravation and irritation.
- Citrus juices or oils
- Coriander oil
- Balm mint oil
- Cottonseed oil
- Geranium oil
- Lavender oil
- Almond extract
- Ground-up nuts
- Witch hazel
Should you get natural and organic skincare products? It’s your choice. It depends on what will work best for your personal routine, preference, and conscience. If you’re choosing to go eco-friendly and you want to reap the benefits of natural skincare mentioned above, go for it. But if your priority is to improve your skin, always look for the effective product that is most suitable for your skin type – whether it’s natural or synthetic. Check out the best skincare options for your specific needs online and try from those. Read user reviews and do some research so you can find the best option for your skin.